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First Year Experience: Books about starting university and study skills

Recommended Titles

I recommend you read some of these books as you ease your way into the 1st year of university life at UL.

Cracking the College Code

This is the ‘must have’ essential guide for all students, parents and guardians embarking on a journey into third level. Written in straightforward language, key topics include: making informed choices, preparing for change, getting to know how the third level system works, what students face in the first weeks and months at college, where and when to look for help, the challenges of living at home or away.

The Ultimate Study Skills Handbook 

This covers all the core skills you will need to help you make the most of your university course. This is the handbook of techniques, tips and exercises. Written by a team of experts and tested on students, the advice in this book will help you to improve your grades, save time and develop the skills that will make you stand out to prospective employers. Whichever subject you are studying, this practical and concise book will help you find your individual learning style and tell you exactly what you need to know to excel as a student:

  • Working out the best way for you to learn
  • Doing your research
  • Presentations
  • Revising for exams
  • Improving your critical thinking skills
  • Managing your time 


Managing your own learning at university : a practical guide

This practical self-help guide for students helps you meet the challenges of going to university. Here, the often daunting experience of facing new subjects, reading lists, large classes and different methods of teaching and assessment are addressed in an entertaining, accessible and helpful way.


Study and critical skills in college

McWhorter discusses the active strategies that develop students' proficiency with text and lecture material—emphasizing the cognitive approach to learning, the basis for how to apply study skills to academic disciplines, and how to identify early warning signs of academic difficulty. At the same time, she stresses that students must adapt how they read and how they study to suit the characteristics of each unique academic discipline

Doing Your Research Project: A Guide for First-Time Researchers

Doing your Research Project is the market leading book for students across the social sciences conducting small scale research projects.


The Study Skills Handbook  

This is an invaluable resource for undergraduate students of all disciplines, and is also ideal for postgraduates, mature students and international students. It prepares students for what to expect before, during and after their studies at university. When it comes to studying, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. This engaging and accessible guide shows students how to tailor their learning to their individual needs in order to boost their grades, build their confidence and increase their employability. Fully revised for the fifth edition, it contains everything students need to succeed.


Critical Thinking Skills : Effective Analysis, Argument and Reflection  


This is an essential resource for students looking to refine their thinking, reading and writing skills. Stella Cottrell’s student-centred approach demystifies critical thinking and breaks down a complex subject into manageable chunks. With clear explanations, relevant examples and plenty of exercises throughout, this book helps students to develop their analytical reasoning skills and apply them to a range of tasks including reading, note-making and writing. This text will turn even the most hesitant student into a proficient critical thinker.

This is an ideal companion for students of study skills, humanities, social sciences, business and arts programmes, where assessment includes essay and report writing. It is suitable for students of all levels. 


The Exam Skills Handbook : Achieving Peak Performance : Achieving Peak Performance

Provides an easy-to-follow set of strategies and techniques that build to a plan for achieving your best possible exam performance. It gives practical step-by-step guidance in long-term planning for optimal performance through to last minute revision strategies. 


Inside Track to Academic Research, Writing & Referencing

Academic Research, Writing & Referencing will provide you with practical guidance and tips on searching for literature and referencing your sources in a scholarly manner, helping you to avoid plagiarism and to produce successful academic writing assignments whatever your course of study. With the in-depth understanding of the practice of integrating and referencing academic sources and research into your writing that this book delivers, you will be better prepared to deal with – and succeed in -  the full range of writing tasks that will be expected of you over the course of your academic studies and on into your chosen career.


Better Exam Results: A Guide for Accountancy and Business Students 

Better Exam Results will help you develop proven study and exam techniques. Step-by-step it guides you through the various stages of learning from planning your study time, to reading, making notes, revising and preparing for exams.
Malone is an established bestselling author who shows you how to:
* Study effectively and save time
* Build confidence and realize your potential
* Focus your attention
* Make significant notes
* Read resourcefully
* Tackle case studies
* Control exam stress
* Avoid common mistakes


The Sciences Good Study Guide

Essential for students studying science, technology, engineering or mathematics, this book offers practical advice on key study skills such as reading and note taking, as well as exercises and activities specifically based around scientific subjects.Unique to this study guide is the special Maths Help section offering quick reference on essential mathematics techniques.


Cite Them Right : The Essential Referencing Guide  

All assignments need to include correct references: this book shows you how. Cite them right is the renowned guide to referencing and avoiding plagiarism. It is an essential resource for every student and author, providing clear and comprehensive coverage of a crucial part of academic study. Now in its ninth edition, the book continues to provide detailed examples for all print and electronic sources, business, government, technical and legal publications, works of art and images.